What is a QR code?

A QR code is like a two-dimensional barcode. It can be used to encode text, a URL or other data so it can be quickly and easily read by a QR code reader.

We've started experimenting with them at the Library as a way for you to grab information from a screen and put it on your mobile.

Reading a QR code

Free QR code reading software is available for most phone platforms. Check your manufacturer's website if your platform isn't listed below.

Platform Software
Android Barcode Scanner
iPhone Scan App
Windows Phone Bing Vision*

* Windows Phone 7 and 8 do not require any software to be installed; the default search app will scan, remember and share QR Codes out of the box.

When you've installed the QR code reading software on your phone, just load it up and point your phone's camera at the code on the right. It will take you to the Findit search page.

How to use QR Codes

We have added QR Codes to the record displays of our library catalogue - you can find the image in the bottom right of the screen. These codes contain information on how to find the item - if it is a book, then it will hold the title, author and location. If an online resource, it will link to the item so you can view it on your phone or tablet.

Saving Scans of QR Codes

It can be difficult to keep track of every book and resource you look up, but this is where having the information digitally can really help.

Scanning programs like Barcode Scanner by ZXing Team (for Android) will let you "Share via email" the results of your scan.

scan of book

select Gmail

Send an email to yourself, and change the subject to keywords you can search for later. For example, MCC105 Essay.


Create a folder (or tag, or label) and name it QR Codes (or books, or similar), and move all of these emails into it.

Later, if you need to reference the materials you looked up, you can simply perform a search on your mailbox

There are a number of variations on this theme, including creating multiple sub-folders for all the books relating to each project or unit. For further examples on sorting using Google's Gmail, see the article: 12 Very Powerful Gmail Tips by Darko Johnson.

Findit on your mobile device


What is a QR code?